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1 Hawthorne Crime- Mobs and Organized Crime

Gomorrah: A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System

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Gomorrah: A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples.

Since seeing his first murder victim, at thirteen, Roberto Saviano has watched the changes in his home city. For Gomorrah, he disappeared into the Camorra and witnessed at close range its audacious, sophisticated, and far-reaching corruption that has paralyzed his home city and introduced the world to a new breed of organized crime. Roberto Saviano was born in 1979 and studied philosophy at the University of Naples. Gomorrah, his first book, has won many awards, including the prestigious 2006 Viareggio Literary Prize. After its publication, he was placed under police protection. An Economist Book of the Year

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of the Year Gomorrah is Roberto Saviano's nonfiction account of the decline of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network with a large international reach and stakes in construction, high fashion, illicit drugs, and toxic-waste disposal. Known by insiders as the System, the Camorra affects cities and villages along the Neapolitan coast, and is the deciding factor in why Campania, for instance, has the highest murder rate in all of Europe and why cancer levels there have skyrocketed in recent years. Saviano tells of huge cargoes of Chinese goods that are shipped to Naples and then quickly distributed unchecked across Europe. He investigates the Camorra's control of thousands of Chinese factories contracted to manufacture fashion goods, legally and illegally, for distribution around the world, and relates the details of how the improper handling of toxic waste is causing pollution not only for Naples but also China and Somalia. In pursuit of his subject, Saviano worked as an assistant at a Chinese textile manufacturer, a waiter at a Camorra wedding, and on a construction site. A native of the region, he recalls seeing his first murder at the age of fourteen, and how his father, a doctor, was beaten for trying to aid an eighteen-year-old victim who had been left for dead in the street. An engrossing book, animated by a fervor that's uncommon in American investigative reporting . . . As much a literary lament as a gritty expose.--Mother Jones A powerful work of reportage, Gomorrah became a literary sensation when it appeared in Italy last year, selling an astonishing 600,000 copies. It started a national conversation, but also won its 28-year-old first-time author uglier accolades: death threats and a constant police escort. He now lives in hiding. The stakes are high. In Gomorrah, Saviano charts the Camorra's involvement in the garment industry and its grip on the port of Naples, where 1.6 million tons of Chinese merchandise are unloaded a year--and another million pass through without a trace, evading taxes. In mapping out the Camorra's control over garbage and industrial waste removal, as well as drug dealing, construction and public works fraud, Saviano considers human rights indicators (the price of an AK-47 is low in Campania), and economic ones (in the 1990s, the Mercedes sales in one Campania town were among the highest in Europe). Drawing on trial transcripts and his own reporting, he explains the internecine battles between rival factions of the Di Lauro clan for control of the region's drug trade. Part economic analysis, part social history, part cri de coeur, this crushing testimonial is the most important book to come out of Italy in years. Like Conrad's London, Saviano's Naples is also one of the dark places of the earth. He tugged a loose thread in the fabric of Italian bourgeois respectability and kept pulling until nothing was left . . . The emotional truth of Saviano's account is unassailable. I could not get this brave book out of my head. After reading Gomorrah, it becomes impossible to see Italy, and the global market, in the same way again.--Rachel Donadio, The New York Times Think of Italy--the world's seventh-largest economy--and sleek Ferraris, Armani suits, wine, food and tourism come to mind. But . . . an Italian business association reported that the largest sector of the country's economy is organized crime, accounting for an estimated 7 percent of its gross domestic product. That's $127 billion, more than twice the annual revenue of Microsoft. To put flesh on that unsettling X-ray, read Roberto Saviano's astonishing Gomorrah. The book is subtitled 'A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System, ' and both personal and violent it is. Saviano's tour of his native Naples shows us the heart of what can only be called a company town for organized crime, with industrial toxins in great abundance . . . Saviano gallops straight into the maw of the inferno, using a hard-boiled style that has only begun to take root in Italian media. Naples is where he grew up, the Neapolitans are his people, and while the eyewitness accounts he brings to the page--stories of murderous barbarity and devastating debasement--could have been told by one of Dashiell Hammett's chilly protagonists, Saviano is no cold-blooded cynic. If there is a literary model at work here, it might be the Lamentations of Jeremiah . . . Many of Saviano's most astonishing set pieces are like dioramas from some lurid museum. There are murders, murders with torture, disposal of bodies (ingenious techniques that verge on folkways: bodies tossed into wells, followed by a grenade to bury them under tons of silt, extortion, gang wars and a teeming drug culture populated by zombie-junkies that make parts of Naples seem like scenes from 'Night of the Living Dead' . . . Saviano first began reporting on the Camorra as an analyst for a citizen watchdog group. This puts him squarely in the activist-journalism tradition of, say, George Orwell's Homage to Catalonia. Saviano openly acknowledges the influence of both left-wing and theorist Pier Paolo Pasolini and Mafia-fighting judge and martyr Giovanni Falcone. He also exhibits the passion and heroism of a young man (he was born in 1979). His work has brought him death threats and, in turn, police protection--though not until Umberto Eco made a public appeal for the government to take action.--Antony Shugaar, The Washington Post Book World Saviano's strongly written book deserves the remarkable attention it has been getting. Shelves of books have been published about the Mafia during the last thirty years, many of them written on the fly by journalists who drew on large chunks of court documents and made little attempt to tell a coherent, dramatic story. Saviano's Gomorrah, by contrast, quite self-consciously (sometimes a little too self-consciously) models itself on such books as Michael's Herr's Dispatches and Truman Capote's In Cold Blood. Saviano gives a telling account of the ways in which organized crime in southern Italy fits into a world system of contraband goods--textiles, appliances, arms, and drugs--with connections to China's huge production of counterfeit goods, to off-the-books (but not necessarily criminal) employment in Italy, arms trafficking in Eastern Europe, construction and real estate in northern Europe, and the drug trade of South America. All of this adds up to an international underground economy that has implications far beyond its local boundaries.--Alexander Stille, The New York Review of Books Napule (pronounced Na-poo-lay), as the natives refer to her, is where Virgil wrote the Aeneid. And no doubt it is Virgil, the voice of Reason in Dante's Divine Comedy, after whom Roberto Saviano fashioned himself as he risked life and limb to record one of the most in-depth accounts ever written about Italy's notorious underworld crime ring and its dealings in the international markets of high fashion, weapons, drugs, construction, and toxic waste disposal. This is a literary tour de force about The System (the name by which the Camorra refers to itself) and how those in it do their bad-guy business: 'To know you are businessmen destined to end up dead or in jail and still feel the ruthless desire to dominate powerful and unlimited economic empires.' Beginning at the Port of Naples, which he calls 'an open wound, ' Saviano participates in the offloading of contraband from a Chinese vessel. He calculates that '60 percent of the goods arriving in Naples escape official customs inspection, 20 percent of the bills of entry go unchecked, and fifty thousand shipments are contraband, 99 percent of them from China' . . . A chapter titled 'The Secondigliano War' is the book's most captivating. (Secondigliano is a suburb of Naples where Camorristi live and do business.) Here, like a Shakespearean scholar, Saviano holds forth on the attributes and fatal flaws of his favorite mob characters, while at the same time interpreting the meaning of an internecine Camorra war: 'This is the new rhythm of criminal entrepreneurs, the new thrust of the economy: to dominate it at any cost. Power before all else. Economic victory is more precious than life itself. Than anyone's life, including your own.'--Richard Horan, The Christian Science Monitor Saviano . . . uses the port city of Naples as an entry point into the nefarious dealings of the Italian crime network, the Camorra, which has a stranglehold on the global economy through its control of the international clothing market, art collecting, drug dealing, construction trades, and toxic waste disposal. Naples is the epicenter for the criminal cartel si

Synopsis:

A groundbreaking, major bestseller in Italy, Saviano's gripping nonfiction account chronicles the decline of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network with a large international reach and stakes in construction, high fashion, illicit drugs, and toxic-waste disposal.

Synopsis:

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples. 

Synopsis:

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples.

Since seeing his first murder victim, at thirteen, Roberto Saviano has watched the changes in his home city. For Gomorrah, he disappeared into the Camorra and witnessed at close range its audacious, sophisticated, and far-reaching corruption that has paralyzed his home city and introduced the world to a new breed of organized crime. Roberto Saviano was born in 1979 and studied philosophy at the University of Naples. Gomorrah, his first book, has won many awards, including the prestigious 2006 Viareggio Literary Prize. After its publication, he was placed under police protection. An Economist Book of the Year

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of the Year Gomorrah is Roberto Saviano's nonfiction account of the decline of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network with a large international reach and stakes in construction, high fashion, illicit drugs, and toxic-waste disposal. Known by insiders as the System, the Camorra affects cities and villages along the Neapolitan coast, and is the deciding factor in why Campania, for instance, has the highest murder rate in all of Europe and why cancer levels there have skyrocketed in recent years. Saviano tells of huge cargoes of Chinese goods that are shipped to Naples and then quickly distributed unchecked across Europe. He investigates the Camorra's control of thousands of Chinese factories contracted to manufacture fashion goods, legally and illegally, for distribution around the world, and relates the details of how the improper handling of toxic waste is causing pollution not only for Naples but also China and Somalia. In pursuit of his subject, Saviano worked as an assistant at a Chinese textile manufacturer, a waiter at a Camorra wedding, and on a construction site. A native of the region, he recalls seeing his first murder at the age of fourteen, and how his father, a doctor, was beaten for trying to aid an eighteen-year-old victim who had been left for dead in the street. An engrossing book, animated by a fervor that's uncommon in American investigative reporting . . . As much a literary lament as a gritty expose.--Mother Jones A powerful work of reportage, Gomorrah became a literary sensation when it appeared in Italy last year, selling an astonishing 600,000 copies. It started a national conversation, but also won its 28-year-old first-time author uglier accolades: death threats and a constant police escort. He now lives in hiding. The stakes are high. In Gomorrah, Saviano charts the Camorra's involvement in the garment industry and its grip on the port of Naples, where 1.6 million tons of Chinese merchandise are unloaded a year--and another million pass through without a trace, evading taxes. In mapping out the Camorra's control over garbage and industrial waste removal, as well as drug dealing, construction and public works fraud, Saviano considers human rights indicators (the price of an AK-47 is low in Campania), and economic ones (in the 1990s, the Mercedes sales in one Campania town were among the highest in Europe). Drawing on trial transcripts and his own reporting, he explains the internecine battles between rival factions of the Di Lauro clan for control of the region's drug trade. Part economic analysis, part social history, part cri de coeur, this crushing testimonial is the most important book to come out of Italy in years. Like Conrad's London, Saviano's Naples is also one of the dark places of the earth. He tugged a loose thread in the fabric of Italian bourgeois respectability and kept pulling until nothing was left . . . The emotional truth of Saviano's account is unassailable. I could not get this brave book out of my head. After reading Gomorrah, it becomes impossible to see Italy, and the global market, in the same way again.--Rachel Donadio, The New York Times Think of Italy--the world's seventh-largest economy--and sleek Ferraris, Armani suits, wine, food and tourism come to mind. But . . . an Italian business association reported that the largest sector of the country's economy is organized crime, accounting for an estimated 7 percent of its gross domestic product. That's $127 billion, more than twice the annual revenue of Microsoft. To put flesh on that unsettling X-ray, read Roberto Saviano's astonishing Gomorrah. The book is subtitled 'A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System, ' and both personal and violent it is. Saviano's tour of his native Naples shows us the heart of what can only be called a company town for organized crime, with industrial toxins in great abundance . . . Saviano gallops straight into the maw of the inferno, using a hard-boiled style that has only begun to take root in Italian media. Naples is where he grew up, the Neapolitans are his people, and while the eyewitness accounts he brings to the page--stories of murderous barbarity and devastating debasement--could have been told by one of Dashiell Hammett's chilly protagonists, Saviano is no cold-blooded cynic. If there is a literary model at work here, it might be the Lamentations of Jeremiah . . . Many of Saviano's most astonishing set pieces are like dioramas from some lurid museum. There are murders, murders with torture, disposal of bodies (ingenious techniques that verge on folkways: bodies tossed into wells, followed by a grenade to bury them under tons of silt, extortion, gang wars and a teem

Synopsis:

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples. 

Since seeing his first murder victim, at thirteen, Roberto Saviano has watched the changes in his home city. For Gomorrah, he disappeared into the Camorra and witnessed at close range its audacious, sophisticated, and far-reaching corruption that has paralyzed his home city and introduced the world to a new breed of organized crime.

About the Author

Robert Saviano was born in 1979 and studied philosophy at the University of Naples. Gomorrah, his first book, has won many awards, including the prestigious 2006 Viareggio Literary Prize. After its publication, he was placed under police protection.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780312427795
Author:
Saviano, Roberto
Publisher:
Picador USA
Translator:
Jewiss, Virginia
Author:
Jewiss, Virginia
Subject:
TRU003000
Subject:
Organized crime
Subject:
Sociology - General
Subject:
Camorra - Italy
Subject:
Camorra - Economic aspects
Subject:
Crime - True Crime
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20081131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Includes one black-and-white map
Pages:
320
Dimensions:
7.45 x 5.5 x 0.85 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Crime » General
History and Social Science » Crime » Mobs and Organized Crime
History and Social Science » Crime » True Crime
History and Social Science » Europe » Italy » General
History and Social Science » Sale Books
History and Social Science » World History » Italy

Gomorrah: A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System Used Trade Paper
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Product details 320 pages Picador USA - English 9780312427795 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , A groundbreaking, major bestseller in Italy, Saviano's gripping nonfiction account chronicles the decline of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network with a large international reach and stakes in construction, high fashion, illicit drugs, and toxic-waste disposal.
"Synopsis" by ,
A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples. 

"Synopsis" by , A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples.

Since seeing his first murder victim, at thirteen, Roberto Saviano has watched the changes in his home city. For Gomorrah, he disappeared into the Camorra and witnessed at close range its audacious, sophisticated, and far-reaching corruption that has paralyzed his home city and introduced the world to a new breed of organized crime. Roberto Saviano was born in 1979 and studied philosophy at the University of Naples. Gomorrah, his first book, has won many awards, including the prestigious 2006 Viareggio Literary Prize. After its publication, he was placed under police protection. An Economist Book of the Year

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A Christian Science Monitor Best Book of the Year Gomorrah is Roberto Saviano's nonfiction account of the decline of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network with a large international reach and stakes in construction, high fashion, illicit drugs, and toxic-waste disposal. Known by insiders as the System, the Camorra affects cities and villages along the Neapolitan coast, and is the deciding factor in why Campania, for instance, has the highest murder rate in all of Europe and why cancer levels there have skyrocketed in recent years. Saviano tells of huge cargoes of Chinese goods that are shipped to Naples and then quickly distributed unchecked across Europe. He investigates the Camorra's control of thousands of Chinese factories contracted to manufacture fashion goods, legally and illegally, for distribution around the world, and relates the details of how the improper handling of toxic waste is causing pollution not only for Naples but also China and Somalia. In pursuit of his subject, Saviano worked as an assistant at a Chinese textile manufacturer, a waiter at a Camorra wedding, and on a construction site. A native of the region, he recalls seeing his first murder at the age of fourteen, and how his father, a doctor, was beaten for trying to aid an eighteen-year-old victim who had been left for dead in the street. An engrossing book, animated by a fervor that's uncommon in American investigative reporting . . . As much a literary lament as a gritty expose.--Mother Jones A powerful work of reportage, Gomorrah became a literary sensation when it appeared in Italy last year, selling an astonishing 600,000 copies. It started a national conversation, but also won its 28-year-old first-time author uglier accolades: death threats and a constant police escort. He now lives in hiding. The stakes are high. In Gomorrah, Saviano charts the Camorra's involvement in the garment industry and its grip on the port of Naples, where 1.6 million tons of Chinese merchandise are unloaded a year--and another million pass through without a trace, evading taxes. In mapping out the Camorra's control over garbage and industrial waste removal, as well as drug dealing, construction and public works fraud, Saviano considers human rights indicators (the price of an AK-47 is low in Campania), and economic ones (in the 1990s, the Mercedes sales in one Campania town were among the highest in Europe). Drawing on trial transcripts and his own reporting, he explains the internecine battles between rival factions of the Di Lauro clan for control of the region's drug trade. Part economic analysis, part social history, part cri de coeur, this crushing testimonial is the most important book to come out of Italy in years. Like Conrad's London, Saviano's Naples is also one of the dark places of the earth. He tugged a loose thread in the fabric of Italian bourgeois respectability and kept pulling until nothing was left . . . The emotional truth of Saviano's account is unassailable. I could not get this brave book out of my head. After reading Gomorrah, it becomes impossible to see Italy, and the global market, in the same way again.--Rachel Donadio, The New York Times Think of Italy--the world's seventh-largest economy--and sleek Ferraris, Armani suits, wine, food and tourism come to mind. But . . . an Italian business association reported that the largest sector of the country's economy is organized crime, accounting for an estimated 7 percent of its gross domestic product. That's $127 billion, more than twice the annual revenue of Microsoft. To put flesh on that unsettling X-ray, read Roberto Saviano's astonishing Gomorrah. The book is subtitled 'A Personal Journey Into the Violent International Empire of Naples' Organized Crime System, ' and both personal and violent it is. Saviano's tour of his native Naples shows us the heart of what can only be called a company town for organized crime, with industrial toxins in great abundance . . . Saviano gallops straight into the maw of the inferno, using a hard-boiled style that has only begun to take root in Italian media. Naples is where he grew up, the Neapolitans are his people, and while the eyewitness accounts he brings to the page--stories of murderous barbarity and devastating debasement--could have been told by one of Dashiell Hammett's chilly protagonists, Saviano is no cold-blooded cynic. If there is a literary model at work here, it might be the Lamentations of Jeremiah . . . Many of Saviano's most astonishing set pieces are like dioramas from some lurid museum. There are murders, murders with torture, disposal of bodies (ingenious techniques that verge on folkways: bodies tossed into wells, followed by a grenade to bury them under tons of silt, extortion, gang wars and a teem

"Synopsis" by ,

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

A groundbreaking, unprecedented bestseller in Italy, Roberto Saviano's insider account traces the decline of the city of Naples under the rule of the Camorra, an organized crime network more powerful and violent than the Mafia. The Camorra is an elaborate, international system dealing in drugs, high fashion, construction, and toxic waste, and its influence has entirely transformed life in Campania, the province surrounding Naples. 

Since seeing his first murder victim, at thirteen, Roberto Saviano has watched the changes in his home city. For Gomorrah, he disappeared into the Camorra and witnessed at close range its audacious, sophisticated, and far-reaching corruption that has paralyzed his home city and introduced the world to a new breed of organized crime.

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